“We carry out a three-year study in action for public health, funded by the 3rd Health Programme of the European Commission. The aim of the project is to create and launch in several European countries online tools to self-assess well-being under the guidance of mental health professionals and to carry out multi-level interventions for public mental health. In Poland, the interactive application will accompany the implementation of a four-level intervention model for prevention and psychological support in selected communities. The work of ten consortium members from different countries is led and coordinated by the office of the non-governmental alliance against depression located at the university hospital in Frankfurt am Main. The total budget of the project is over 1.97 million euros.” Said Doctor Piotr Toczyski, Head of Department of Media Sociology and Social Communication at the Maria Grzegorzewska University in Warsaw (APS) is the national principal investigator (PI) in the consortium and the leader in the international part devoted to the development of new Internet tools.
“We lead the further development of an already existing non-commercial digital tool and its awareness-raising website designed for guided self-management of mild forms of depression. We aim at its implementation in several European countries. We are also adapting the best practice model of regional alliances against depression to Polish social conditions, starting from the central district of Warsaw. Informal allies in this alliance are all people, institutions and media interested in Warsaw city center who want to promote three ideas: depression can affect anyone; depression is a real disease; depression can be treated.” He continued.
“In our Department of Media Sociology and Social Communication at the Maria Grzegorzewska University in Warsaw (APS) we are committed to a research-in-action approach. We benefit from the wide range of facilities provided by a public university with a 100-year tradition, located in the central part of the capital of Poland. We work with professionals who in their academic and expert work address issues related to digital public life, community conversations, health promotion, human rights, and social dialogue. We address interpersonal, local and global communication, both in their traditional and new digital manifestations. We stimulate constructive discussion of issues important to communities, based on respectful dialogue, as well as attempts at understanding forms of social communication from the other end of the scale. We are familiar with digital product development and the specifics of user behavior in digital environments. As external tutors we co-train educators, psychologists, social workers and artists.”
Piotr Toczyski, MPsych, PhD, complemented psychology and sociology studies with postgraduate qualification in psychological assistance and crisis intervention granted after two-year practical training. He is a certified supervisor of annual internships for psychologists entering the profession, who are working towards obtaining the European EuroPsy certificate, certifying that they practice psychology according to this standard. Dr. Toczyski has many years of management experience from the Polish and international non-governmental sector. He also served as a board member of a Brussels-based European organization of social communication practitioners and worked in the private sector for seven years as an independent market analyst in a publicly listed media company.